Whether you’re a local business, or an international chain, high local search ranking plays a crucial role in your success. It helps improve your visibility among local searchers, which in turn improves your chances of gaining local traffic. But the problem is that optimizing for local search is quite tricky, and your efforts may prove to be unsuccessful if you don’t do it right.
What Affects Your Local Ranking?
Despite the challenges of local SEO, there are a few ways to be prepared for better local search ranking. And this begins with an understanding of all the important factors that affect your ranking. Here are some of the top local search ranking factors according to a report published by Moz:
- Link profile – Just like regular SEO, local SEO also involves building a good link profile. The quality, and quantity of inbound links to your site play a huge role in your local search ranking. With local search, you’ll need to focus on building quality local links with the help of reputable local websites and publications.
- GMB signals – Have you updated your information accurately and completely on Google My Business? When ranking a business on local search, Google uses the info on GMB to evaluate the accuracy of the result for the searcher. So details like proximity, categories, and city and state play a huge role in whether or not you rank well in a user’s search results.
- Keywords – The quantity, quality, and relevance of the keywords you use can determine your local search ranking too. You’ll need to use a high-ranking, and relevant keyword along with the target location name as your main keyword. And then you can spread this keyword throughout your content, such as H1s and H2s, meta titles, meta descriptions, etc.
- Social signals – Your social presence can play an important role in your local search ranking. A large following, and a high engagement rate can improve your social presence and, in turn, boost your local ranking. Try gaining more followers by engaging with influential personas on social media, and producing interesting, highly-engaging content.
In addition to these, there are several more factors that can affect your local search rankings including review signals, anchor text quality, Domain Authority, etc. Understanding them, and working to improve them can play a huge role in your ranking.
How Do You Improve Your Local Ranking?
Now that you know some of the most important local ranking factors, you can get started with your local SEO efforts. Here are some tips that will help you out:
- Improve your link profile – Build quality local links naturally. Try to get reputable local websites and publications to link to your site by being a part of local awards, donations, and charity drives, etc. You can even sponsor a local sports team, association, or event so you can get a link from their official site.
- Optimize your GMB page – There are several steps involved in optimizing your GMB page. First of all, make sure you go through the verification process so Google can start displaying your listing on local search results. In addition to this, update the correct information in regards to name, address, phone number, URL, etc. And don’t forget to upload a few high-quality images that will entice searchers to click on your listing.
- Optimize your website – As mentioned earlier, make the most of relevant and high-ranking keywords with location names to optimize your site content. This would include optimizing the titles, meta descriptions, URLs, and image alt attributes with the relevant location name and keywords.
These basic local SEO tips should be able to help you improve the way you rank on local search. And if you’re interested to find out more useful local SEO tips, be sure to check out the infographic local SEO guide below.